Sometimes I feel so incredibly small. Swallowed by the sea of information I attempt to swim in each day. The internet does that to me sometimes. Makes me feel even tinier in scope of the big picture.

I'm one of those types of people who keep turning around, mouth agape, ready to try something new that's caught my fancy. And yet, sometimes I don't feel like I'll ever master anything. I love sewing...but don't get around to it often. I love embroidery, but can't remember the last time I sat down to organize a project involving anything beyond mending the ever-growing pile of holey clothing we five produce. I love cooking, but feel burnt out on it half of the time. I love gardening, but alas, I'm just not a naturally patient person. I love painting, and art, and drawing, and reading, and photography and....

Well, honestly my list of things TO LEARN is always growing, but my list of ACCOMPLISHMENTS.... Well, not so much.

But what that all has to do with the lovely Fava is simply this. Our growing garden is consuming me lately. "How can I use fava greens?" "How should I prune a new fig tree?" "What exactly does German Chamomile look like?" "Why are some of our squash leaves curling and unhappy?" "Are our seeds getting too hot in the greenhouse?" "When do I harvest Rocket Salad Greens?" Oh well. I'm learning. Not mastering, mind you. But actively learning. And my curiosity is peaked. I want to use every darn leaf out in the greenhouse. Pea shoots and tendrils. Dandelion blossoms. Violets. Fava leaves.

This recipe comes to you from Fairview Harvest Garden Shares, stumbled upon while searching for something to do with our happy little forest of Fava greens. I've adapted it a bit since I was missing some of the main ingredients. And I had my qualms. You see, I LOVE basil pesto and have been unwilling to substitute any other green (including the popular parsley) and still call it "pesto." But alas, this recipe caught my eye, and the results were delicious. This pesto had a lovely, springy, zesty bite. And did you know that "pesto" comes from the Italian word "to pound?" I was just wondering how people used to make pesto before the handy food processor was invented. So, if you don't have a food processor, please feel free to chop finely and pound the ingredients below.

May this recipe inspire you, as it did me, to use some of your greens and pesto-up-you-life with some other green as we await the big basil crops of summer.

2 cups fava greens (clip leaves of the younger fava plant)
1-2 garlic cloves (depending on your love of garlic)
1/2 cup good quality oil (olive or walnut preferably)
1/4-1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup sunflower seeds, walnuts or the painfully expensive pine nut
lemon, to taste
Salt and Pepper, to taste

1. Collect young fava greens/leaves by snipping the pairs of leaves from the plant or buy them at your local farmer's market.

2. Prepare all of your ingredients for food processing or pounding. Wash and gently pat dry the fava leaves. Grate the Parmesan cheese. Separate your garlic cloves. Now add them all to the food processor's work bowl.

3. Puree until smooth. Add a squeeze of lemon. If too thick at this point, add more oil.

4. Scoop from work bowl and eat immediately or store. I love to freeze in small quantities to add to soups (white bean, minestrone, vegetable), dressings, and sauces.


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1. Katie Perera

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Scarborough, Canada

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